Derelict former church could be demolished amid safety concerns

The local authority does not consider repairing the property in Robert Street to be 'economically viable'.

Derelict former church in Port Glasgow could be demolished amid safety concerns LDRS

A derelict former church in Port Glasgow is facing the prospect of demolition amid concerns the building presents an “immediate danger” to the public.

Inverclyde Council, owner of Clune Park Church since 2019, has submitted an application for listed building consent so it can be knocked down.

The local authority does not consider repairing the property in Robert Street to be “economically viable” while it is thought tearing it down can assist in the delivery of a masterplan for the wider area.

A supporting statement said: “The report acknowledges the importance of the historic environment and our buildings of heritage, but having suffered such serious dilapidation and neglect over many years the retention of Clune Park Church cannot be justified.

“Sadly, the once-thriving and very popular Clune Park estate has developed notoriety throughout Inverclyde and well beyond due to the severe rate of decline, abandonment with many buildings considered completely derelict.

“The ongoing reputational damage to Inverclyde and the negative impact this has on meaningful investment in the area is of serious concern.

“Vandalism, antisocial behaviour break-ins, along with potentially life-threatening risks associated with the structural collapse of buildings represents an unacceptable situation for Inverclyde Council.”

The church has been served with two dangerous building notices and worries have been expressed it will only become more of a target over time.

The statement added: “As has been witnessed within other buildings on the estate, the greater the level of deterioration, the more likely the building will be targeted, with fire being the greatest concern.

“In conclusion, Clune Park Church is incapable of repair; and as evidenced there are overriding, social, environmental, public safety and economic reasons in support of its demolition.”

Serious issues have been identified with the gothic tower and roof structure, meaning the building presents “an immediate danger to the public” due to the possibility of an uncontrolled collapse.

The statement said the site was being secured and contractors appointed to “take down these dangerous elements”.

A decision will be made on the application at a later date.

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